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Old 06-21-2011, 11:35 AM   #1
Hew Fung
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PR Squat Critique

I'd appreciate some analysis and criticism of my recent back squat PR set. I can see a whole bunch of problems with it, but I'll wait to post my thoughts until you guys rip me up a bit.

I'm on 5/3/1 and this was my week 3 workout. I did 5x230, 3x267.5, and then the 300 set below. I was hoping for 3x300, with 5x300 as an absolute best case. I got 4, so I'm happy with that. That said, my form leaves something to be desired. You'll see me pause after the 4th rep in the video. I was thinking about going for a 5th but I felt a tiny tweak in my lower back and decided to check my ego and just be happy with 4.

4x300 (WFS)

I've been on 5/3/1 for eight or nine cycles now and I'm making steady gains in both DL and BS, with press and bench lagging behind a bit. My previous squat PR was 290, back in September, so hitting 300 for 4 is some decent progress.
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Old 06-21-2011, 05:06 PM   #2
John Kaupp
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Re: PR Squat Critique

Start of the descent- your knees are coming forward instead of sitting back with the hips.
Bottom of the lift- knees collapse in, back angle starts to change.
Ascent- knees stay in, hips rising more rapidly than the shoulders.

I am assuming your are doing LBBS. I am more Oly. Someone else more versed in the LBBS can chime in here as well, but it looks like you are quad dominant. If you are doing more of a PL cycle, get your posterior chain caught up to the front side.
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Old 06-22-2011, 02:13 PM   #3
Andrew G. Greenberg
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Re: PR Squat Critique

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hew Fung View Post
I'd appreciate some analysis and criticism of my recent back squat PR set. I can see a whole bunch of problems with it, but I'll wait to post my thoughts until you guys rip me up a bit.

I'm on 5/3/1 and this was my week 3 workout. I did 5x230, 3x267.5, and then the 300 set below. I was hoping for 3x300, with 5x300 as an absolute best case. I got 4, so I'm happy with that. That said, my form leaves something to be desired. You'll see me pause after the 4th rep in the video. I was thinking about going for a 5th but I felt a tiny tweak in my lower back and decided to check my ego and just be happy with 4.

4x300 (WFS)

I've been on 5/3/1 for eight or nine cycles now and I'm making steady gains in both DL and BS, with press and bench lagging behind a bit. My previous squat PR was 290, back in September, so hitting 300 for 4 is some decent progress.
These squats are fine. Little off-position because its limit loads but nothing egregious.

Best thing about these squats is that they are GUTSY. You are working with very heavy weights for you, and you are working crazy hard to pull that set off. You are certainly to be commended for that kind of commitment to the set. I want to show this video to all the 150 lb people who say they are stalling on squat.
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Old 06-22-2011, 06:27 PM   #4
Robert Fabsik
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Re: PR Squat Critique

Tough reps but not horrible, especially not horrible based on your intro.

First your depth rocked. If you want to keep going that low, rock on. For LBBS, most are satisfied with breaking parallel (something you had no problem doing).

Second, I agree with you needing to keep shoving your knees out.

Third, I think you are looking too far down, which might be keeping your upper body down and out of sink with your hips. Instead of looking at the floor just in front of your feet you should be looking down at a spot about 5-6 feet ahead of you.

Fourth, you drop down pretty fast, this might be a result of using a heavy weight, typically in LBBS the goal is controlled descent, not super slow but not a dive bomb either. Sit back, unlock the knees and shove them out and build tension on your way down then drive up.

Good, hard work.
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Old 06-24-2011, 07:09 AM   #5
Hew Fung
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Re: PR Squat Critique

Thank you for the suggestions and words of encouragement. The knee collapsing issue is a constant one for me. I'm fine at lower weights, but when things get really tough my reptile brain just seems to take over and my "shove the knees out" cue goes right out the window. Can anyone suggest some assistance exercises to help correct whatever adductor/abductor imbalance I have?
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Old 06-24-2011, 07:10 AM   #6
Matthew Swartz
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Re: PR Squat Critique

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hew Fung View Post
Thank you for the suggestions and words of encouragement. The knee collapsing issue is a constant one for me. I'm fine at lower weights, but when things get really tough my reptile brain just seems to take over and my "shove the knees out" cue goes right out the window. Can anyone suggest some assistance exercises to help correct whatever adductor/abductor imbalance I have?
Do you have access to a globogym?
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Old 06-24-2011, 07:58 AM   #7
Hew Fung
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Re: PR Squat Critique

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Originally Posted by Matthew Swartz View Post
Do you have access to a globogym?
No, but I do have access to a semi-commercial grade cable type system at my office, vaguely similar to this (WFS). Is that of any use?
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Old 06-24-2011, 08:06 AM   #8
Robert Fabsik
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Re: PR Squat Critique

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hew Fung View Post
Thank you for the suggestions and words of encouragement. The knee collapsing issue is a constant one for me. I'm fine at lower weights, but when things get really tough my reptile brain just seems to take over and my "shove the knees out" cue goes right out the window. Can anyone suggest some assistance exercises to help correct whatever adductor/abductor imbalance I have?
If you could get a mini band or maybe a short mini band, on your warmup sets you could put the band around your knees so that it is pulling them together forcing you to shove them out to squat. I wouldn't do this on a work set, but I think doing them during your first light warmups might help.

This is the idea (something I found on youtube): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ha8ykM5Mfqo (WFS)
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Old 06-24-2011, 08:32 AM   #9
Matthew Swartz
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Re: PR Squat Critique

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Originally Posted by Robert Fabsik View Post
If you could get a mini band or maybe a short mini band, on your warmup sets you could put the band around your knees so that it is pulling them together forcing you to shove them out to squat. I wouldn't do this on a work set, but I think doing them during your first light warmups might help.

This is the idea (something I found on youtube): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ha8ykM5Mfqo (WFS)
This.

The reason I ask is because most globogyms will have hip adductor and abductor machines which are awesome for developing those muscles.
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Old 06-24-2011, 09:27 AM   #10
Jakob Schmidt
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Re: PR Squat Critique

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Fabsik View Post
If you could get a mini band or maybe a short mini band, on your warmup sets you could put the band around your knees so that it is pulling them together forcing you to shove them out to squat. I wouldn't do this on a work set, but I think doing them during your first light warmups might help.

This is the idea (something I found on youtube): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ha8ykM5Mfqo (WFS)
This is genius. Thank you.

Matt, we're implementing this soon.
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